On the firing line – Dalmeny High School students depict Canadian peacekeepers in Bosnia

The deepest wounds aren’t always the most visible.

Dalmeny High School students perform a scene depicting Canadian peacekeepers caught in the crossfire during the civil war in Bosnia in the early 1990s

Grade 11 students at Dalmeny High School (DHS) staged a powerful one-act performance on Wednesday, November 8 showing the effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) on Canadian peacekeepers who served in Bosnia in the early 1990s.
Each year, students at the school write and perform a short play depicting historical events as a Remembrance Day tribute.
This year, the focus was on a little-known chapter in Canadian history.
“We started out do something on World War II,” said Sandra Schatz, a teacher at DHS and a coordinator of the project.
“We’ve done several pieces related to the 100th anniversary of World War I over the past few years, so we decided to do something different.
“But as we went along, we changed the focus. We have such a large population of female students who love to act, so we thought we would shift to something more contemporary, where women actually served as combat soldiers and peacekeepers.
“We wanted it to be realistic and contemporary and to educate people at the same time.” Continue reading “On the firing line – Dalmeny High School students depict Canadian peacekeepers in Bosnia”

Veterans relate experiences during their tours of duty

In September, 1999, Les Brauner was 23 years old and had a year of training under his belt in Kingston, Ontario as a radio operator.

Julie Miller (left to right) Yan Fullwood, Les Brauner and Terri Brauner at the Remembrance Day service at Valley Manor School in Martensville on Wednesday, November 8. Yan Fullwood, who served in Afghanistan, and Les Brauner, who served in Bosnia, are Canadian military veterans. They spoke to the students about their experiences.

Then the call came, and within a matter of days he shipped out with the rest of his unit to an isolated area of Bosnia near the Croatian border. He was part of the NATO peacekeeping corps assigned as part of the stabilization force, whose job it was to maintain a fragile peace established just a few years earlier.
It was the first time he’d been out of Canada. He was excited, but also very nervous; not knowing what to expect.
What he found was a war-torn country that was slowly rebuilding from years of unbelievable violence.
“For most of the 20th Century, Bosnia was part of a communist country called Yugoslavia,” said Brauner in a presentation to students at Valley Manor School in Martensville during a Remembrance Day service on Wednesday, November 8. “Over the years, long-standing ethnic, political and religious differences between the different populations who had lived there for centuries created an environment of distrust and led to an unstable situation.
“In the early 1990s, violent conflict between the groups broke out, as they wanted to split and form their own countries. Continue reading “Veterans relate experiences during their tours of duty”